Sheldon Epps Will Direct Blues for an Alabama Sky in Pasadena, Replacing Angela Bassett Vehicle

News   Sheldon Epps Will Direct Blues for an Alabama Sky in Pasadena, Replacing Angela Bassett Vehicle
Blues for an Alabama Sky, Pearl Cleage's play about the Harlem Renaissance, will replace the previously announced Pastoral starring the Broadway-bound Angela Bassett, as the second production of the Pasadena Playhouse season.

Sheldon Epps
Sheldon Epps Photo by Joseph Marzullo/WENN

Playhouse artistic director Sheldon Epps (Baby It's You!) will direct Blues, to run Nov. 1-27.

Blues for an Alabama Sky, the 1995 play by the author of Flyin' West, which the Playhouse produced several seasons ago, "unfolds in the summer of 1930 in Harlem, NY, just as the harsh realities of the Great Depression have devastated an ebullient decade of the Harlem Renaissance," according to Playhouse notes. "Disease and poverty have overshadowed the creative euphoria that permeated and fueled a surge of African American artists, writers and luminaries.

"[The play] introduces a rich cast of characters, scrambling to survive and make some sense of their overlapping personalities, politics and love lives: Angel is a struggling blues singer and nightclub performer who cannot find a job; her friend Guy, a costume designer, is also out of work but dreams of being hired to design dresses for the famous African-American singer and dancer Josephine Baker; their neighbor Delia, a social worker, is trying to organize a family planning clinic in Harlem; their friend Sam, a doctor, works long hours delivering babies at the Harlem Hospital; and Leland, having recently moved to New York from Tuskegee, sees in Angel a memory of lost love and a reminder of those 'Alabama skies where the stars are so thick it's bright as day.'"

Casting will be announced. Opening night is Nov. 6. The Pasadena Playhouse is located at 39 South El Molino Avenue, Pasadena, CA.

Meanwhile, Angela Bassett is set to star in Katori Hall's The Mountaintop, starting previews Sept. 22 on Broadway.

For more information about Pasadena's season, visit

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